What can be worse than weeds or ugly patches of dead grass ruining the look of your property’s landscaping? Tall weeds seem to pop up overnight and your lush green grass is dying right before your eyes. Turf grass in North Texas is fighting a constant battle with three common problems: diseases, weeds and insects. What can you do to fight them?
Bermuda grass, St. Augustine and other southern turf grasses can be susceptible to various diseases. Bald patches, brown spots and dead grass can be a sign of disease in your grass. From the fungus that causes take-all patch to the combination of thatch and other conditions that cause slime mold, there can be a variety of causes for the problem.
How to Control Turf Grass Diseases
Be sure your commercial landscape contractor has established a regular feeding and fertilization routine. This will help keep your grass disease-free. Using the right fertilizer will keep St. Augustine and other southern grasses healthy.
The best course of action is to consult a commercial landscaping company to correctly identify and treat the disease affecting your grass. Incorrect treatment could cause further damage and kill your grass.
Simply replacing the sod without applying the proper treatment is not recommended. This can infect the new turf grass, increasing your maintenance costs.
Weeds are one of the most troublesome problems in maintaining healthy grass. Not only do they mar the beauty of a lush, green lawn, but they also steal precious water, nutrients and sunlight from your turf grass.
Perennial weeds like Dallisgrass, dandelions and chicory can lay dormant during the winter months. However, they will grow quickly with the first spring rains. The summer heat encourages their growth, as well as in annual weeds like crabgrass. Before long, your turf areas are a patchwork of weeds.
How to Control Weeds
The best way to control weeds is prevention. Use a post-emergent herbicide during their active growth season. It is important to identify the type of weed in order to determine the proper treatment. You must know if the weed is annual or perennial. Pre-emergent herbicides will help to deter new perennial weed seedlings, but the perennial weed itself will need to be treated with a post emergence.
Use caution when using all chemicals. Application of the wrong herbicide can damage your grass and harm the environment.
With more than 25,000 different insect species in Texas, insect control can be difficult. What can be mistaken for a disease in your grass, might very well be the effects of insect damage. Chinch bugs suck the life out of St. Augustine grass, leaving large, brown patches of dead grass.
Effective insect control targets the harmful pests that cause damage to plants. Insects like grub worms, chinch bugs and fire ants flourish when it is hot and dry.
Keep in mind that not all insects are a problem. Many are not harmful, and some are actually beneficial. For instance, Lady bugs eat aphids, scale insects, thrips, and mites that damage roses and other plants.
How to Control Insects
First, identify the type of insects that have infested your grass. This will help determine which chemicals will be most effective. Chemical treatments are usually effective against many of the common insect pests. Talk to your commercial landscape maintenance contractor to determine the best chemical weed and pest control for your lawn.
This is the time to prepare your property for the heat of the upcoming months. If you start now to take care of your turf grass, you can avoid these problems. With the right amount of water, proper mowing, weed and pest control, you will have a beautiful, green lawn.